2003 October 10 Friday
Mark Krikorian Says Immigration Not Electoral Third Rail Issue

Mark Krikorian, executive director of the Center for Immigration Studies, says that Arnold Schwarzenegger's victory proves that taking a position critical of illegal immigration does not harm a Republican candidate seeking office.

The very first issue that arose when Arnold entered the race was his past support for Prop. 187 which he did not back away from. Even worse, the demonic Pete Wilson was cochairman of Arnold's campaign, and most of Arnold's staff were former Wilson people. Also, Arnold immediately denounced the new law granting driver's licenses to illegal aliens, signed by Gov. Davis in a desperate attempt to shore up Hispanic support. And to top it off, Arnold's main opponent to succeed Davis was a well-known Hispanic Democrat who had taken the lead in opposing Prop. 187.

There was obviously a lot more going on in this election than immigration, but if the bipartisan consensus had been correct about illegal immigration being radioactive for Republicans, Arnold could not have won. And yet, not only did he win, but he and the other major candidate who had something critical to say about illegal immigration State Sen. Tom McClintock got a combined total of 62 percent of the vote.

While it seems unlikely he will do so, if Schwarzenegger was to pursue the use of state and local law enforcement personnel to round up and deport illegal aliens he could make a substantial impact on the size of the California state budget deficit. Illegal immigrants who work at low wage jobs, pay little in taxes, but who use more social services and generate other costs for state and local government cost the taxpayers of California billions of dollars per year more than they pay in taxes. Their deportation would help balance the budget.

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2003 October 10 08:40 PM  Immigration Border Control


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